The 3rd show of the run is probably the best - the bookends (28th) close behind. There's a big 1st set: 18 songs/2 hrs, but long gaps, like Veneta or 5/7/77, though the songs themselves are pretty concise on this night until the Dawk Staw. The set varied little this week, as they prepared for E72 and readied a couple new songs. This was the last Pig-heavy run.
First Set. China Cat
is good but the Rider
is great. Bobby's rhythm figures are awesome and during the verse listen for Jer slamming a counter-rhythm. Black Throated
is out of tune and takes awhile to get the momentum back. Bobby teases his plucked-string project, that would eventually become Weather Report Prelude, before Brown Eyed Women
. He and Billy both tease Greatest Story before Beat it on Down the Line-14
. There's some feedback but it doesn't stop Donna from rocking on out. Give some attention to Bobby on Cumberland
and you'll see he's having a great show. The 3rd-ever Looks Like Rain
is the first great one. Jer was on pedal steel for the original arrangement and though it's not unique like the 28th it's solid. It was played every night of the run - Bobby getting it polished for E72. After a mostly trainwrecked Tennessee Jed
(until the solo anyway), the rest of the set pretty much shines. Check Keith on You Win Again
. The best versions of Jack Straw
are like pinball (google it, kids). There are lots of ace Next Time You See Me
s in '72; else this would seem better. The Playing
sounds just like an E72. Comes a Time
just gets by but the Me & Bobby McGee
stands against any in '72 - and they played it a lot.
Second Set. Truckin'
has a nice tempo - and Bobby screeching. Everybody plays hot hot hot on Ramble
. Bobby makes a comment before Two Souls
that wouldn't air today and probably wasn't appreciated by half at the time. An uptempo Mexicali
is, unusually, right in the middle of the 2nd set, but has a Jer tornado anyway. He uses double stops on Big Boss Man
and riffs he used in '67. The Dawk Staw
is better than those on E72. It's one for those that like the acid jazz slash noise experiments and dissonant sequences. There's a great section that becomes very musical and goes into a brief Feelin' Groovy, then other areas, until, on a peak, Jer dramatically drops back into the main riff. The sole Dawk Staw of the run, it's not quite like any other '72. Billy teases NFA at the end but Jer makes it a stand-alone. Phew. Billy then starts crazy fast for Not Fade Away
and Jer spins rock-n-roll styled riffs from '69. Goin' Down the Road
is prime GD with wow-Jer-magic. Bobby just screams his way through the NFA reprise. Sugar Magnolia has appeared on set lists but it's likely there was no encore, given that it was on neither the AUDs nor the Betty Board - and only rarely an encore (and not in '72; though it did end the 2nd set several times that fall. The encores at this time were all One More Saturday Night).
Overall = 4½
I Know You Rider - Bobby's rhythm & Jer's counter attack
Jack Straw - like pinball
Playing in the Band - like the best E72
Me & Bobby McGee - perfect rendition
Ramble on Rose - One of 72's best - this is where it became great
Mexicali Blues - Jer tornado
Dark Star - some wander around; this takes you on a journey
Not Fade Away>Goin' Down the Road Feeling Bad - Everybody is hot. GD magic.
SOURCES: The miller.100000
is an incredible restoration - Rob Eaton cleaned the entire tape by hand, like an Egyptian relic (though obviously more valuable), Charlie mastered. Sounds great. The SirMick SBD is also good. Both Playing and Dark Star are on the bonus disc of the first pressing of Rockin' the Rhein
(though the Playing is mislabeled).